Category Archives: Eschatology

Defending the Future of Jesus: The pretense that Reformed Biblical Theology is uniformly Amillennial

What I like about this quote is how Horton explains the City of Man, ruled by Satan, is a rival to the City of God. Properly understood, this makes me wonder about common phrases like “redeeming the culture” or “redeeming the city” which are tossed around in reformed circles. If the City of Man is at war with the City of God and is trying to supplant it, why do we go to such pains to get cozy with the culture? Why do we look for church-planters who are good at contextualizing the Gospel instead of men who understand this tension and antithesis?

via Joshua Judges Ruth: Dr. Mike Horton on the City of God and the City of Man.

Well, if you don’t think the Reformed tradition is correct in its understanding of Scripture and the Great Commission, then you might wonder about current Reformed slogans. But the fact is that Horton is, IF he were to claim to speak for the whole of the Reformed Tradition, a revisionist. And treating his conclusions as the unquestionable standard for judging the behavior and speech of Reformed churches is to engage in such revisionism.

The Reformed tradition has been both amillennial and postmillennial. Recently, some Reformed thinkers have embraced historical premillennialism. I have no problem with Horton or anyone else picking one side rather than the one I happen to think is true. But worrying about run-of-the-mill Reformed understanding of the Great Commission is not peaceful co-existence.

And, while I respect his Reformed bona fides (and in so doing hopefully set a good example for him and others) I think Horton is wrong, as I read the Great Commission.

 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:18-20 ESV).

When is Jesus given all authority in heaven and earth. At the end? “On the last day?” No. We are called by the King to disciple all the nations. The whole reason there is an “antithesis” between God and Man is because they are claiming the same territory at the same time. The new city begins now. Or rather, began then. Jesus is building it up not from invisible ghosts, or in the future, but in living breathing people who dwell here and now on the earth:

    As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in Scripture:
“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone,
a cornerstone chosen and precious,
and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.”
So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe,
“The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone,”
“A stone of stumbling,
and a rock of offense.”
They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy
(1 Peter 2:4-10 ESV).

Yes, we are in one sense exiles from the city of Man, but that city is crumbling now. And we are called to minister in a new one now. Not later. Not at the end. Horton is quoted as saying that all humanity is outside of the Garden blocked from re-entering by the Cherubim. But in Acts 1 the two Cherubim over the Ark of the Covenant are gone. Rather two men now hold that office.

Jesus has been raised. And Humanity has been raised up with him to a far better place than the Garden of Eden. Yes there is more to come, but the path there is not an invisible one that leaves the city of man intact. Rather we are to replace it with the city from above that is our Mother.

 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ. Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death (1 Corinthians 15:22-26 ESV).

Not one giant battle at the end with every rule and every authority and power. But only one last remaining enemy gets knocked down at the last Day.

For further reading.

The Future of Jesus 10: Who will Kings acknowledge?

I thought this series was done, but I have to add another entry.

I started the series with Psalm 2, perhaps we should re-visit it. Psalm 1 and 2 together are commonly considered the “entry” into the Psalter. If so, then perhaps Psalm 2 presents us with a problem and then spells out the solution in later Psalms.

Why do the nations rage
and the peoples plot in vain?
The kings of the earth set themselves,
and the rulers take counsel together,
against the LORD and against his Anointed, saying,
“Let us burst their bonds apart
and cast away their cords from us.”
He who sits in the heavens laughs;
the Lord holds them in derision.
Then he will speak to them in his wrath,
and terrify them in his fury, saying,
“As for me, I have set my King
on Zion, my holy hill.”
I will tell of the decree:
The LORD said to me, “You are my Son;
today I have begotten you.
Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage,
and the ends of the earth your possession.
You shall break them with a rod of iron
and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.”
Now therefore, O kings, be wise;
be warned, O rulers of the earth.
Serve the LORD with fear,
and rejoice with trembling.
Kiss the Son,
lest he be angry, and you perish in the way,
for his wrath is quickly kindled.
Blessed are all who take refuge in him.
(Psalm 2 ESV)

The choice is stark. They must “perish in the way” if they refuse to “take refuge in him” and “kiss the Son.”

So, what do the kings decide to do? Later psalms address this question. Psalm 72 is about Solomon but also about Christ, the Son, and his Church:

May he have dominion from sea to sea,
and from the River to the ends of the earth!
May desert tribes bow down before him,
and his enemies lick the dust!
May the kings of Tarshish and of the coastlands
render him tribute;
may the kings of Sheba and Seba
bring gifts!
May all kings fall down before him,
all nations serve him!
(Psalm 72:8-11 ESV)

And more:

All the day my enemies taunt me;
those who deride me use my name for a curse.
For I eat ashes like bread
and mingle tears with my drink,
because of your indignation and anger;
for you have taken me up and thrown me down.
My days are like an evening shadow;
I wither away like grass.
But you, O LORD, are enthroned forever;
you are remembered throughout all generations.
You will arise and have pity on Zion;
it is the time to favor her;
the appointed time has come.
For your servants hold her stones dear
and have pity on her dust.
Nations will fear the name of the LORD,
and all the kings of the earth will fear your glory.
(Psalm 102:8-15 ESV)

And again:

All the kings of the earth shall give you thanks, O LORD,
for they have heard the words of your mouth,
and they shall sing of the ways of the LORD,
for great is the glory of the LORD.
(Psalm 138:4-5 ESV)

And again:

Praise the LORD from the earth,
you great sea creatures and all deeps,
fire and hail, snow and mist,
stormy wind fulfilling his word!
Mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars!
Beasts and all livestock,
creeping things and flying birds!
Kings of the earth and all peoples,
princes and all rulers of the earth!
(Psalm 148:7-11 ESV)

Kings are called upon to praise the Lord. We are promised that they will all give thanks to God. This cannot possibly be a promise “reserved for the next life” since, if the kings don’t learn to acknowledge and give thanks to Jesus now, they will never be in a place to do so in the next life.

No, in this world, they will give thanks. “Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth.

That’s everyone.

If this be materialism, then fire up the stake and chain me to it

I just returned from Musoma, Tanzania, a place that could stand for thousands of others such population centers in Africa, or millions if we include Asia.

I want people who are not trusting Jesus as Lord and Savior to do so, in the millions billions.

That is not all I want.

I want people to be able to turn on a spigot in their homes, instead of walking for hours a day with a heavy burden half that time. I want them to see water flow from that spigot that is perfectly safe to drink, not the poison that most of them presently consume.

I want their homes to be protected so that most insects are kept outside, or better, I want them to find a way to kill most of the insects around their homes.

I want their food to be kept off the ground when they prepare it and to have a clean place to eat it.

I want their roads to be smooth and wide to allow trade both ways.

I want them to have cheap and available transportation so they can both trade and work at the places that are most rewarding (which will be where their products and labor are needed the most, by the way).

No, more than that. I want a near generation in Musoma to have the ability to allow their young adult kids to go on a road trip to the West Coast to see the Atlantic without having any serious concerns about the safety involved.

Sooner, I’d like people to be able to travel at night without making special arrangements for a policeman with an AK-47 to accompany them.

I want them to be rich. Understand? I want them to be so wealthy that they no more remember what life is like for them now than we remember what it was like to live in cities in the late 19th and early 20th century when epidemics due to bad water and sanitation were still killing thousands.

I want their babies to live to grow up.

I want someone to see the chlorinator, that uses salt and a car battery to make water safe, and say “I can make that better and cheaper.” I want him to find a way to mass market it and sell it to millions of people in Africa and Asia. And if he gets filthy rich in the process, while he saves the lives of tens of millions, that if fine with me.

I want Westerners to actually see Africa and Asia as an amazing opportunity rather than a charity case that keeps them in death and darkness while lining the pockets of NGOs. Africa is to the Charity Industry what Mars is to NASA. A golden goose.

I want Western governments to realize that poor, corrupt nations are not in our best interests even if it allows us to make them do what we want them to. Rather, a planet full of wealthy nations will bring incredible riches to the West, rather than a planet dominated by poverty.

I want a refrigerator and a freezer in virtually every home.

And yeah, to make this more pointed: We pray for this every time we say, “Thy Kingdom Come.” God wants us to thrive, not linger in death.

The appeal of the past

Do not say, “Why were the old days better than these days?” for it is not wise to ask that. Ecclesiastes 7.10

How can Solomon make such a blanket statement?

The past almost always produces in our perceptions the illusion of stability.

What if every age is an age of transition?

If every age is an age of transition, the transition of the immediate present will always seems so difficult that every age in the past will be remembered as an age of stability. For one thing, other people dealt with past transitions. We the living are dealing with our own perceived disruptions. Actual experience and stress is always more vivid than records of the trials of other people who have long departed. Also, the perceived heritage of the past is perceived as a given that we are accustomed to, while the future is indeterminate and therefore threatening.

Egypt is always remembered as easy.

Thus the trap of trying to go back to a better time.

The common delusions of remembered youth may also be a factor here. About the time you start to get really aware of how life works life has changed from what it was when you were younger. But when you were younger you were protected from much of how life worked. So you think, always, of a past that was more stable than the future.

Time is real and it only goes in one direction. God wants you to trust him for it. The next year is always supposed to be better.

What is the Gospel?

  • The Gospel is the announcement, promise, and warning that God has given the world a new king and that alliance with him is the only way to life in this world and vindication at the final judgment to come.
  • The Gospel is at once both “religious” and “political” since it is about God and his work but also about a new supreme earthly authority and protector.
  • The Gospel was and is specifically Jewish in orientation since the new king is the king of and the fulfillment of the promise made through and to Israel. When the Gospel was being announced by Jesus prospectively, this was quite explicit. Now it can be presented as explanation depending on circumstances and the needs of hearers.
  • The Gospel is the announcement of the death and resurrection and enthronement of Jesus of Nazareth.
  • The Gospel does not identify the hearer, but leaves the hearer to decide whether he or she will receive the Gospel as truly “good news” or else resist and come under bad new.
  • The Gospel is generic, not specific: It declares what God has done publicly for the world, not what God has done or plans to do for specific individuals in history, beyond how they can be identified by the way they respond to the Gospel.
  • The Gospel present’s the universal king as also the pioneer of the human race: the vindication of Jesus at his resurrection in the past points to the future resurrection and judgment of every member of the human race in the future.
  • The Gospel reveals that death is an enemy, but one who has been conquered and domesticated for those who submit to King Jesus.

Calvinism is true, but it is not the Gospel.

A switch flipped over in my head

I notice when I was blogging in 2000, my posts, for all their flaws, were much more personal. I’m afraid controversy has changed my stance. Also, the results of controversy: I was a lot more confident about my personal future and my ability to provide for my own back in 2000. (Some of this confidence was somewhat sinfully naive, I think. But much of what happened was truly unforeseeable.) Optimism produces a different tone.

Anyway, this is kind of a throwback autobiographical emotive thingy.

I’ve always been a six-day creationist, “young” earther–at least since college anyway. I’m convinced 1. the Bible teaches these things and 2. that the Bible is true. Until one of those premisses changes, I remain a young earther.

But I have hated having to argue about it in the unbelieving world. It seems so much easier to start with Jesus and the first century and argue for his resurrection and then from there to the reliability of Scripture (I’m not renouncing presuppositionalism, here, by the way).  So intellectually faithful but emotionally weary or wary, I was. I believed and would assert what the Bible says about chronology, but I wanted to talk about other things.

But something has happened. I don’t know how to explain it other than the analogy of a switch flipping in my head.

Suddenly I think the fact that history has barely begun is an exciting truth that deserves to be trumpeted. The whole world seems tired and depressed right now. Even the people trumpeting Keynsean myths about how the future can be opened up don’t seem to believe what they are saying. (It seems far easier to believe that people hate those who disagree with global warming or evolution or quantitative easing or environmentalism than that they are firmly convinced of the ideas they defend. Am I the only one who detects this?) We’re running out and running down. Austerity is ahead.

But like John Paul Jones, Jesus has not yet begun to fight. History has barely begun. Remembering that the earth has just started, and that Jesus came quite near to the beginning of history rather than waiting a million years, just seems like good new worth sharing.

I think a couple of things have converged to make me more excited about this message. For one, the financial crisis is also a Science ™ crisis. Science has been a welfare case especially since WW2 and it has all the resulting features of a bubble and corruption. (More on that in a later post, perhaps). On a personal level, I’ve had to direct my one homeschooled child to do some science reading, which means I’ve been doing some myself.  So this has all become the focus of my attention as has not been true for some time.

Anyway, I think people need to know that the human story has just begun. It is not ending. Whatever judgments we need to go through (and yes we need to repent to avoid eternal wrath) austerity is not the future of the human race. Unimagined prosperity lies ahead for our children–our many many unrestricted, unaborted children with unrationed wealth. Jesus is gracious and he is just starting.


The Future of Jesus 9, Who inherits the Land/Earth?

All of Psalm 37 is amazing, but I’ll narrow my focus on a few verses toward the latter half:

I have been young, and now am old,
yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken
or his children begging for bread.
He is ever lending generously,
and his children become a blessing.

Turn away from evil and do good;
so shall you dwell forever.
For the Lord loves justice;
he will not forsake his saints.
They are preserved forever,
but the children of the wicked shall be cut off.
The righteous shall inherit the land
and dwell upon it forever.

This is not some past dispensation. Jesus appealed to this text in the sermon on the Mount:

Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

And, just to be clear, Jesus is not changing “righteous” to “meek.” That was already the OT meaning. In fact, that is the meaning established earlier in Psalm 37:

Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath!
Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil.
For the evildoers shall be cut off,
but those who wait for the LORD shall inherit the land.

In just a little while, the wicked will be no more;
though you look carefully at his place, he will not be there.
But the meek shall inherit the land
and delight themselves in abundant peace.

So two questions:

1. How is it Christian to claim that the meek won’t inherit the earth?


2. How is it right or just to portray confidence in Jesus’ promise that the meek will inherit the earth as a form of “triumphalism”?

One tactic has been to claim that the “earth” the meek will inherit is not this earth but a future replacement planet. That rips the word out of Matthew’s context. Matthew show Jesus preaching that the meek will inherit the earth, meekly submitting to death, and then inheriting this earth in the climax of Matthew’s Gospel:

Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

It is this earth that the meek get, parceled out by the earth’s new king.

The Future of Jesus

Girl resurrected

By me kings reign

via Passage: Proverbs 8:15 (ESV Bible Online).

So says Lady Wisdom in a book by King Solomon to his son. Knowing this, we can see why Paul portrays the new covenant, brought about through death and resurrection, as the onset of adulthood and freedom.

Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise. I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father. In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world. But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.

“Sons” here is intended in contrast to both “slaves” and “children.” We have inherited freedom. But freedom in the Bible is not a libertarian concept. One becomes free because one becomes enthroned.

The hand of the diligent will rule,
while the slothful will be put to forced labor (Proverbs 12.24).

So for us, if we are no longer under the elements, we are over them. Christ is enthroned and we are his people, friends, counselors, co-rulers.

Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods. But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more?

Thus we can now no longer be ruled by our passions. We must be in control of our spirits

For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another. But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

Lady Wisdom is our companion for resurrection life.

Cornelius Van Til on Self Realization & the Kingdom of God

The Kingdom of God as Man’s Summum Bonum

We need all this background in order to understand what is meant by saying that the kingdom of God is man’s summum bonum. By this term kingdom of God we mean the realized program of God for man. We would think of man as (a) adopting for himself this program of God as his own ideal and as (b) setting and keeping his powers in motion in order to reach that goal that has been set for him and that he has set for himself. We propose then briefly to look at this program which God has set for man and which man should have set for himself.

The most important aspect of this program is surely that man should realize himself as God’s vicegerent in history. Man was created God’s vicegerent and he must realize himself as God’s vicegerent. There is no contradiction between these two statements. Man was created a character and yet had to make himself ever more of a character. So we may say that man was created a king in order that he might become more of a king than he was. We may see what this means first in the individual, and secondly, for society.

The Individual

For the individual man the ethical ideal is that of self-realization. Let us first see why this should be so, and secondly, what it means in detail.

That the ethical ideal for man should be self-realization follows from the central place given him in this universe. God made all things in the universe for himself, that is, for his own glory. But not all things can reflect his glory self-consciously. Yet it is self-conscious glorification that is the highest kind of glorification. Accordingly, God put all things in this universe into covenant relations with one another. He made man the head of creation. Accordingly, the flowers of the field glorified God directly and unconsciously, but also indirectly and consciously through man. Man was to gather up into the prism of his self-conscious activity all the manifold manifestations of the glory of God in order to make on central self-conscious sacrifice of it all to God.

If man was to perform this, his God-given task, he must himself be a fit instrument for this work. He was made a fit instrument for this work, but he must also make himself an ever better instrument for this work. He must will to develop his intellect in order to grasp more comprehensively the wealth of the manifestation of the glory of God in this world. He must will to be an ever better prophet than he already is. He must will to develop his aesthetic capacity, that is, his capacity of appreciation; he must will to be be an even better priest than he already is. Finally, he must will to will the will of God for the whole world; he must become an ever better king than he already is. For this reason then the primary ethical duty of man is self-realization. Through self-realization man makes himself the king of the earth, and if he is truly the king of the earth then God is truly the king of the universe, since it is as God’s creature, as God’s vicegerent, that man must seek to develop himself as king. When man becomes truly the king of the universe the kingdom o f God is realized, and when the kingdom of God is realized, God is glorified.

Self Realization

But what then, in more detail, is involved in this goal of self-realization that man must set for himself? We can bring this out by working out the idea expressed above, when we said that man must learn to will the will of God. Man must work out his own will, that is, he must develop his own will first of all. Man’s will needs to become increasingly spontaneous in its reactivity. Man was created so that he spontaneously served God. For this reason he must grow in spontaneity. Whatever God has placed within man by way of activity must also be regarded by him as a capacity to be developed. Man was not created merely with a will to will the will of God. In his heart there was an inmost desire to serve God. But just because mas was created with this will, God wants man to develop this will.

In the second place, man’s will needs to become increasingly fixed in its self-determination. In other words, man must needs develop the backbone of his will. Not as though man was created a volitional amoeba, which had to pass through the invertebrate stage before it finally acquired a backbone. Man was created a self. He was the creature of an absolute self and could not be otherwise created than as a self. But for this very reason again man had to develop his self-determination. Man’s God is absolutely self-determinate; man will be God-like in proportion that he becomes self-determining and self-determinate under God. In proportion that man develops his self-determination does he develop God’s determination or plan for his kingdom on earth. God accomplishes his plans through self-determined characters. An unstable man would be useless in the kingdom of God.

In the third place, man’s will must increase in momentum. Man’s will would naturally increase in momentum in proportion that it increased in spontaneity and self-determinateness. Yet the point of momentum must be separately mentioned. As man approaches his ideal, the realization of the kingdom of God, the area of his activity naturally enlarges itself. Just as the manager of a growing business needs to increase with his business in alertness, stability, and comprehensiveness of decision, so man, with the development of his progress toward his ideal, would have to develop momentum in order to meet his ever increasing responsibility.

–From the not-a-book Christian Theistic Ethics, Vol III of In Defense of the Faith, pages 44-46.


The King who became to us wisdom from God

Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”

via Passage: 1 Cor 1 (ESV Bible Online).

How did Jesus become wisdom from God to us? One way to explain this would be to appeal to the truth of the incarnation. Jesus was, we could reason (and properly) wisdom become flesh and dwelling among us.

But I don’t think the incarnation is what Paul has in mind. If we  take the terms as related to one another–wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption–then we need to understand that more than the incarnation must be in view.

Do understand this, consider Solomon. He needed wisdom because God had made him king. He asked for it and God granted it to him. His wisdom wasn’t for himself alone. It was so that he could not only rule Israel, but represent Israel to others. Because Solomon was wise, Israel was considered wise. As he taught this wisdom to others it became more and more actually experience in the growth of faithful Israelites, but it was also reckoned as theirs by virtue of Solomon’s office as their covenant head.

And so Jesus, having learned obedience through the things that he suffered and accepting the Lord’s discipline so that he could grow wise, was granted kingship over all creation. With that office, he was granted the Spirit’s wisdom. He represents all humanity, especially those who believe (the rest end up opposing humanity, including their own), as their wisdom. With this representation as the elevated and enthroned king of the universe equipped with wisdom comes the actual gift of wisdom in the experience of his people. Thus Paul:

When one of you has a grievance against another, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints? Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life! So if you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who have no standing in the church? I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no one among you wise enough to settle a dispute between the brothers, but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers? To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you.

To lack the wisdom to regulate our own affairs in the Church is an insult to Christ who is the wisdom of God to us, and to our own destiny.